Ten killed in Portugal bus accident: rescue services


Ten people killed and 33 hurt when a coach slid off a rain-soaked road and plunged into a ravine in central Portugal, more than 250 firefighters, 88 emergency vehicles and a helicopter were deployed to the scene. Pic: AFP

Lisbon: Ten people were killed and 33 were hurt when a coach slid off a rain-soaked road and plunged into a ravine in central Portugal on Sunday, rescue services said. More than 250 firefighters, 88 emergency vehicles and a helicopter were deployed to the scene near Carvalhal, in the central Castelo Branco district.

The accident occurred around 0845 GMT. The dead included four women and six men, all between the ages of 50 and 70, according to medical teams at the site. Six of those injured have head and chest injuries and are in a serious condition, one doctor said.

All the injured were evacuated to nearby hospitals in Castelo Branco and Coimbra, rescue services said. Rescue team leader Rui Esteves said the bus was travelling from Portalegre in central Portugal to the northern city of Santa Maria da Feira.

He said the identities of the victims were not all known but that all 43 were believed to be Portuguese. While Esteves did not give further details about the accident, the mayor of the nearby town of Serta, Jose Nunes, blamed it on roadworks and weather conditions.

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